Kristen Bell explains how a “household triangle” helps her youngsters deal with large feelings
Though she prefers to let her children work out her (many) struggles alone, Kristen Bell reveals how she sometimes deals with her children’s major conflicts.
Actress Kristen Bell made no secret of the fact that her daughters Lincoln and Delta don’t get along very well. “They fight almost 100 percent of the time, which came as a big surprise to me,” Bell told Today’s Parent in an exclusive interview last year. And although she stated that she is doing her best to handle the school-age struggles on her own, she has now revealed one of the tactics she uses when deciding to resolve her conflict: a family triangle.
“When my girls have a problem and we need to talk about it, I use what I call the ‘family triangle,'” Bell said in her new Shattered Glass podcast, which she moderates with her friend Monica Padman (who also co-stars with Bell’s husband Dax Shepard moderated the popular Armchair Expert podcast).
“There are three of us sitting with our toes together – it’s our version of a circle – so they have to look at each other. I find so much more comes out of those conversations trying to get these little people to talk great emotionsbecause they have to face each other. It’s a powerful thing, the circle. “
Although Bell refers to her tactic as a triangle, she refers to a circle because her podcast guest, feminist journalist and socio-political activist Gloria Steinam, mentioned the power of circles when she discussed some of the challenges she faced in joining the experienced political movement. “I was a freelance writer so I had to learn to be part of a group,” Steinam said. “The political movement helped because the model is a circle in which everyone speaks one after the other and everyone else has to listen.”
Steinam went on to discuss how circles can be effective at helping children communicate: [chairs] in rows, you put them in a circle, that changes everything. “
Bell is a firm believer in actively teaching her children how to solve fights instead of just muttering, “Sorry.” In fact, she never makes them say it. “Sorry is not active“Says Bell. “If you hit someone and all you have to do is apologize, then you’ll learn that all you have to do is apologize and then you’re out.” Her children’s teachers taught them a better strategy: “Our preschool taught us, they instead to say: ‘What do you need?’ So we say, ‘Ask her what she needs.’ And the answer could be, ‘I need space, I need a hug, I need a teacher, I need an ice pack.’ It’s usually an ice pack to be honest. “
Bell also swears by having these chats specifically before bed. “Somebody once told me that children’s brains are most open just before they go to bed. The conversation always pleasantly surprises me. ‘I did this because she annoyed me and I couldn’t control my body But I know I shouldn’t react like that. I’ll try more next time. ‘ It makes me very happy. “
The Bell and Padman Podcast Broken glass can be found on Spotify. Shattered Glass refers to the glass ceiling women have struggled to break through since the women’s rights movement. In this ten episode podcast, Bell and Padman speak to women who have made significant cracks in the ceiling.